- Global Energy Infrastructure
Allan Kern is the owner of APC Performance LLC. He has more than 30 yr of advanced process control (APC) experience and has authored numerous papers on effective, low-maintenance APC solutions. He is the inventor of patented Rate-Predictive Control (RPC), industry’s only inherently adaptive control algorithm; and of XMC, industry’s only model-less method of multivariable control. Mr. Kern holds professional engineering licenses in control systems and chemical engineering, is a senior member of the International Society of Automation (ISA) and is a 1981 graduate of the University of Wyoming.
Petrochemicals / Process Control / Process Optimization / Project Management / Refining / Information Systems
In process automation, multivariable control has always been considered an area of specialization and a luxury for those companies with sufficient scale and resources to justify its high costs of ownership.
A recent <i>Hydrocarbon Processing</i> “Industry Perspectives” survey found that process engineering and optimization is the number-one topic that readers want to read about most. Process engineering and optimization rated higher than the next-highest topic (maintenance and reliability) by a factor of 2:1, and higher than every other topic by a factor of at least 4:1. Process control and instrumentation made the top ten list, albeit below process engineering and optimization by a factor of 7:1.
For more than 30 yr, advanced process control (APC) has established itself as an important and relatively routine and valued part of the industrial process control and operation landscape.
In this article, Hydrocarbon Processing provides published references on model-based control, and contributing author Allan Kern presents his views on model-less control.
Most control engineers know that proportional band and controller gain are largely interchangeable terms—both terms refer to the proportional setting of a proportional-integral-derivative (PID) controller and are commonly used by control system manufacturers.
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